I was walking down Mulberry Street when I came up with the melody for this song. It was well after the bars had closed and the streets were eerily silent. I waded through strewn piles of discarded food containers, empty beer yards, and the sharp rancid smell of some combination of day-old fried shrimp, roasted meats, and beer. It was a strong reminder of why I tend to plan my getaways this time of the year.
You see, September brings the feast of San Gennaro and the feast brings the flock. Every cheap carnival trick, bargain bracelet, Grade-D sausage & pepper sandwich, and crappy wedding band (most likely playing all the greatest of Frank & Dean) line the streets of Little Italy to service the good residents of New Jersey and Connecticut as they swarm through for the annual street fair.
Now, I don’t want to sound like a curmudgeon. I get why people like this feast. They come down to the city, bring the whole family, eat lots of fried food, buy cheap knock-off purses, maybe a DVD of a movie that comes out next week. But the problem is that they all get to go home at the end of the day. I have to suffer through it for two weeks. I don’t use the word suffer lightly either. Last year I had to stop three different guys from pissing on my front door.
Anyway, I was walking home by way of Mulberry through what can best be described as an abandoned, possibly haunted carnival. The wind was blowing some of the lighter trash around. Garbage cans that were over flowing with half-eaten roasted corn and fried dough had morphed into a rats’ paradise. The idea struck me that all of the fantastical characters and acts of a circus also had a pretty seedy underbelly. Every block that I walked home gave me more and more lyrical fodder for the song. There are actually 13 verses to this song but this isn’t a prog-rock band.